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Will giant turbines blow away Ireland’s support for windpower? 

The bright idea was that this would enable Britain to meet it's own renewable energy targets while bypassing growing opposition at home, earning Ireland over £2 billion a year in the process. It was thought that the Irish would accept the turbines as they had in the past. But the very scale of the scheme has ignited an anti-wind movement which spread rapidly through the midlands and is now erupting elsewhere – as the villagers of Finuge are bearing vigorous witness.

Credit:  By Geoffrey Lean | The Telegraph | January 8th, 2014 | telegraph.co.uk ~~

There has not been a threat like it to Finuge in Ireland’s County Kerry for nearly 150 years. Back then, the whole village was almost evicted, when the local landowner, Lord Listowel, decided that he wanted the land on which it stood. His agent had completed the arrangements, but then died unexpectedly and the village was saved.

So it is no small thing when, as has just happened, 275 householders there declare that they are ready to leave their homes rather than to submit to what they see as another assault on their properties – this time by the wind industry. They have erected signs saying: “Home for sale, pending wind farm planning decision. Viewing by appointment only” in protest against plans to erect ten turbines in the area.

The machines – three times the height of Nelson’s column, and taller even than the Great Pyramid of Giza that stood as the loftiest man-made structure on the planet for a small matter of 3,800 years (it was, apparently, finally overtopped by Lincoln Cathedral) – would be the highest constructions in Ireland, if approved by Kerry County Council.

The protests are part of a growing anti-wind movement that has come late to Ireland.

Some 176 wind farms, totalling more than 1,100 turbines, have already been put up around the country, often in beautiful areas, with very little protest. It is only as they are spreading into the lowlands – in pursuit of a national target of generating no less than 40 per cent of the country’s electricity from renewables by 2020 – that resistance is growing.

This is partly because they are coming close to people’s homes, partly because the turbines have to be very big to generate enough electricity from the weaker winds there. And nowhere is this more so than in the Irish midland counties of Meath, Westmeath, Offaly, Laois and Kildare where another 1,100 turbines are planned – some even bigger than at Finuge – to generate electricity for export to the UK.

The bright idea was that this would enable Britain to meet it’s own renewable energy targets while bypassing growing opposition at home, earning Ireland over £2 billion a year in the process. It was thought that the Irish would accept the turbines as they had in the past. But the very scale of the scheme has ignited an anti-wind movement which spread rapidly through the midlands and is now erupting elsewhere – as the villagers of Finuge are bearing vigorous witness.

Source:  By Geoffrey Lean | The Telegraph | January 8th, 2014 | telegraph.co.uk

This article is the work of the source indicated. Any opinions expressed in it are not necessarily those of National Wind Watch.

The copyright of this article resides with the author or publisher indicated. As part of its noncommercial educational effort to present the environmental, social, scientific, and economic issues of large-scale wind power development to a global audience seeking such information, National Wind Watch endeavors to observe “fair use” as provided for in section 107 of U.S. Copyright Law and similar “fair dealing” provisions of the copyright laws of other nations. Send requests to excerpt, general inquiries, and comments via e-mail.

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